Hampshire Astronomical Group

Established 1960, Online since 1998

Observatory Accessibility

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Hampshire Astronomical Group welcome you!

Formed in Portsmouth in 1960 the ‘Hampshire Astronomical Group’ has grown into one of the finest 'amateur astronomical groups' in the UK.

Our extensively equipped Observatory is situated within the South Downs National Park dark skies reserve on the border of Clanfield and Horndean villages in Hampshire.

The Group hold regular Open Evenings at the Observatory from autumn through to spring; giving visitors the opportunity to view the night sky through our very large telescopes or, if cloudy, a tour of the facilities followed by a lecture on an astronomical topic in our modern (heated) clubroom facility.

Furthermore we hold Solar (sun) observing events where visitors can observe our nearest star the 'sun' viewed through our specialist solar viewing equipment  during  daylight hours in the summer months.

We also host private visits and run astronomical courses for the public at the observatory.

We have a long-established association with the University of Portsmouth where their undergraduates and students can avail themselves of our facilities and knowledge base for furthering their studies.

There is a full programme of monthly public lectures, with eminent guest speakers, held at the Clanfield Memorial Hall where non members are more than welcome to attend.

Access and Information to all our activities (which are supported voluntarily by our very active and enthusiastic membership) are shown on this website.  So please feel free to browse, it is constantly up-dated; so why not bookmark us in your browser and visit regularly.

Clear Nights and Dark Skies.

Richard Judd FRAS
President:  Hampshire Astronomical Group - Clanfield Observatory

What's on in the next month...

Friday,
7th October
2016
Autumn Moon Watch Public Open Evening Sold Out!
Moon, Mars & M13
- start time 7:15pm

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Saturday,
8th October
2016
Autumn Moon Watch Public Open Evening Sold Out!
Moon, Mars & M13
- start time 7:15pm

More details...
Sunday,
9th October
2016
Autumn Moon Watch Public Open Evening Sold Out!
Moon, Mars & M13
- start time 7:15pm

More details...
Friday,
14th October
2016
William Herschel and the Rings of Uranus
A talk by Dr Stuart Eves
Clanfield Memorial Hall - start time 7:45pm

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What's on between next month and 6 months...

Saturday,
5th November
2016
Public Open Evening Sold Out!
Moon, Pleiades, M13
- start time 7:15pm

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Sunday,
6th November
2016
Public Open Evening Sold Out!
Moon, Pleiades, M13
- start time 7:15pm

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Friday,
11th November
2016
Mysteries of the Solar System
A talk by Dr Chris North
Clanfield Memorial Hall - start time 7:45pm

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Saturday,
3rd December
2016
Public Open Evening Sold Out!
Moon, Orion, M13
- start time 7:15pm

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Sunday,
4th December
2016
Public Open Evening Sold Out!
Moon, Orion, M13
- start time 7:15pm

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Friday,
9th December
2016
Herschel’s Incredibly Cool Universe
A talk by Dr Chris Pearson
Clanfield Memorial Hall - start time 7:45pm

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Saturday,
7th January
2017
Public Open Evening
Targets to be decided
Clanfield Observatory - start time 7:15pm

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Sunday,
8th January
2017
Public Open Evening
Targets to be decided
Clanfield Observatory - start time 7:15pm

More details...
Friday,
13th January
2017
Protecting Space for Future Generations
A talk by Professor Richard Crowther
Clanfield Memorial Hall - start time 7:45pm

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Saturday,
4th February
2017
Public Open Evening
Targets to be decided
Clanfield Observatory - start time 7:15pm

More details...
Sunday,
5th February
2017
Public Open Evening
Targets to be decided
Clanfield Observatory - start time 7:15pm

More details...
Friday,
10th February
2017
Isaac Newton and the Surrey Pumas
A talk by Mike Frost, BAA Historical Section Director
Clanfield Memorial Hall - start time 7:45pm

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Friday,
3rd March
2017
Public Open Evening - Spring Moon Watch
Targets to be decided
- start time 7:15pm

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Saturday,
4th March
2017
Public Open Evening - Spring Moon Watch
Targets to be decided
- start time 7:15pm

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Sunday,
5th March
2017
Public Open Evening - Spring Moon Watch
Targets to be decided
- start time 7:15pm

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Friday,
10th March
2017
Title TBC
A talk by Michael Maunder
Clanfield Memorial Hall - start time 7:45pm

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Astronomical Events for October 2016

Moon

3 Oct – 19:00 BST – The Moon will be 4° north of Venus and can be seen low in the west-southwest.

12 Oct – Due to the Moon’s libration, it will be possible to see the crater Billy.

23 Oct – 05:00 BST – Use binoculars to view the Moon and M44 (the Beehive Cluster).  It should be possible to get both in the same camera frame.

28 Oct – 11:00 BST – The Moon will be 40 arcminutes from Jupiter.  Although it will be daylight try finding them with binoculars, they will be in the south-southeast, but be careful as the Sun will be nearby.

30 Oct – Second new Moon of the month, this is known as a ‘black Moon’.

31 Oct – Try looking for a 1° lit Moon just after sunset.

Planets

11 Oct – 06:45 BST – Looking low in the east, it will be possible to see Jupiter and Mercury; they will appear to be separated by 50 arcminutes.

15 Oct – Uranus is at opposition and will be in the constellation of Pisces.

21 Oct – Ceres is at opposition and can be found between Pisces and Cetus.

30 Oct – Venus and Saturn will be 3° apart and are visible just after sunset.  Look for them low in the southwest.

Meteor Showers

16 Oct – Start of the meteor shower which ends on the 27 October.

21 Oct – Peak of the Orionid meteor shower with a ZHR of 20-25 meteors an hour.

Occultations

19 Oct – The moon will occult several stars in the Hyades cluster, and 08:40 BST will interact with Aldebaran.

Misc

17 Oct – 03:00 BST – Variable star Algol (Beta Persei) starts to dim.  It is an eclipsing binary with a period of two days, 20 hours and 49 minutes.

20 Oct – 00:00 BST – Another chance to see the eclipse of Algol.

29 Oct – Using binoculars, it should be possible to see the Double Cluster or Sword Handle in the region between the W of Cassiopeia and the outline of Perseus.  The two double clusters are NGC 869 and NGC 884.

30 Oct – British Summer Time comes to an end.

Moon Image Credit: Steve Knight
Saturn Image Credit: NASA

Southdowns Planetarium

The South Downs Planetarium is a registered educational charity, which is run by a small team of experienced and dedicated volunteers.
The Planetarium operates throughout the year, but is not open every day.

Members of the public are welcome to visit the Planetarium at the show times listed on this website.

Public Shows and Dates

Sunday 25th September - 3.30pm - The Northern Lights

As seats sell out fast, it is essential to book your seat.

Admission Prices: £6.00 for adults, or £4.00 for children 6 to 16yrs. Cash or Cheque Only

The South Downs Planetarium Trust is a Registered Educational Charity No. 1096869.

For further information about all South Downs Planetarium activities, contact: 

The South Downs Planetarium and Science Centre
Sir Patrick Moore Building
Kingsham Farm
Kingsham Road
Chichester
West Sussex PO19 8RP

For Sat Nav Users:-

Enter PO19 8AE

Tel: 01243 774400
Ticket hotline: 07818 297292



e-mail: sdownsplanet@btconnect.com

http://www.southdowns.org.uk/

Winchester Science Centre & Planetarium Lecture Series

Adult evening lectures on the second Wednesday's of the Month at 4.30pm and 6.30pm, each follow by a short Planetarium Show about the months sky.

Wednesday 12th October 2016 -- The Origins of Thermonuclear Supernovae -- Talk by Dr Michael Childress (University of Southampton)

Wednesday 9th November 2016 -- Sun Dogs and Blue Moons -- Talk by Prof Don Kurtz

Wednesday 14th December 2016 -- Dark Matter -- Talk by Prof Justin Read (University of Surrey)

Wednesday 11th January 2017 -- A Universe of dwarf galaxies -- Talk by Samantha Penny

These events often sell out so pre-book or call to check on (01962) 863791

For more details on the talks and tickets please visit the Intech web site

What's on after the next 6 months...

Saturday,
1st April
2017
Public Open Evening
Targets to be decided
Clanfield Observatory - start time 7:45pm

More details...
Sunday,
2nd April
2017
Public Open Evening
Targets to be decided
Clanfield Observatory - start time 7:45pm

More details...
Friday,
21st April
2017
TItle TBA
A talk by Professor Jocelyn Bell Burnell
Clanfield Memorial Hall - start time 7:45pm

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Friday,
9th June
2017
Title TBC
A talk by Dr Aprajita Verma
Clanfield Memorial Hall - start time 7:45pm

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Friday,
14th July
2017
Title TBC
A talk by Professor Giovanna Tinetti
Clanfield Memorial Hall - start time 7:45pm

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Friday,
13th October
2017
Title TBA
A talk by Professor Lucie Green
Clanfield Memorial Hall - start time 7:45pm

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Friday,
10th November
2017
Astrobiology : Tour of the Solar System
A talk by William Joyce
Clanfield Memorial Hall - start time 7:45pm

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After Dark at Winchester Science Centre and Planetarium

After Dark: adults only

Tues 11th Oct, Tuesday 22nd Nov & Mon 19th Dec.

Visit the planetarium and play about in the exhibition after the kids have gone home. Activities run throughout the evening so no problem if you cannot get here for 6pm or if you need to leave early.

Ticket price: £10/£8 including one planetarium show and entry to the centre. Add the other show for just +£2.

Teachers: free entry (includes one show); send requests in advance by email using your school/college email address.

Online booking (if you want to see both shows, add the second on the next page)

Telephone bookings (01962) 891925. Please have your credit/debit card ready. If the front desk is too busy for staff to answer your call straight away you can leave your number and they will call you back.

Strictly ages 18yr+ (if you're lucky enough to look younger, please bring ID).

For more details of the events please check out After Dark

Future Learn Free Astronomy Courses

FutureLearn provides a range of free online courses from some of the world's leading educators. Courses are created by UK and international universities, as well as cultural institutions and global centres of excellence in a range of subject areas, like the British Council and the European Space Agency.

A number of Astronomy courses are listed in the website's Science, Maths and Technology category. Recent titles have included 'Moons' and 'In the Night Sky: Orion', both from The Open University. The lead educator on the Orion course, Professor Monica Grady, CBE, worked as part of the project team that successfully landed the Philae probe on a comet last November.

An added advantage of FutureLearn is its focus on 'social learning', whereby learners from all over the world can have conversations about the topics covered during a course with one another, and with the academics leading the course.

FutureLearn adds courses throughout the year and repeats popular titles, so the easiest way to keep up to date is to register on the website. Details on upcoming Astronomy courses will also be listed here.

Next Free Online Astronomy Courses:

New Course - How to Survive on Mars: Starts 24th October 2016 for details to book yourself onto this course click here

New Course - Monitoring the Oceans From Space: Starts 24th October 2016 for details to book yourself onto this course click here

Moons: - Starts 31st October 2016 for details to book yourself onto this course click here